Worried that soon their homes will be destroyed by a major landslip, residents of Indian Walk, Princes Town made another appeal to the authorities to urgently commence works.
Chanting, “We want we house fix. We want we road fix,” residents said following their protest three years ago, the government did some work but it did not help. A couple and their children had to evacuate their home in 2017 because it was on the verge of collapse. Broken pieces of concrete and the house number is all that remains as a frightening reminder that their homes could suffer the same fate. The road at Lengua Road near Light Pole 19 is also badly damaged and almost impassable to vehicular traffic. Resident Robin Singh said, “We are asking the government of T&T, especially Minister of Works, Mr Rohan Sinanan to come and have a look at this problem here that is causing havoc to seven houses and the Moruga to Princes Town Traffic.”
He said that they staged a fiery protest three years ago and continue pleading to the various authorities for help but to date no substantial works have been done to address the problem. He said earlier this year a ministerial team comprising Finance Minister Colm Imbert, Utilities Minister Robert Le Hunte and Minister in the Ministry of Education and then MP Dr Lovell Francis visited and assured them that they would repair the landslip and build a retaining wall before the rainy season. However, nothing was done.
Meanwhile, he said the landslip continues to wreak havoc in their lives. “Two other houses down there the people have to evacuate. The land is pushing their houses away and it is pulling our houses down.” He said the Works Department in Princes Town did a survey of this landslip and recommended the construction of two retaining walls.
He said the landslip is undermining the home of his nephew, Daren Singh. “It cave-in underneath about 10 to 12 feet already, and the house cracking up severely. Singh said he has many sleepless nights because he is afraid that his house could collapse at any time.
“My porch crack, my yard move. The whole half of the house split. The house undermine,” said Singh who took more than ten years to build his home.
Bissoondayia Seecharan fondly called Maya complained that she has to pass through her neighbour’s property to get to her home because of land erosion. She said the dirt and rubble from the house that collapsed were coming down into her property. “I don’t know what to do. When I go to sleep I say the rubble coming down, now, not on my house. All I want is to see how fast they could do it and I could get my place to pass.”
Robin Singh appealed, “We here once again pleading with the government to give us one form of assistance. Please we are begging you, times are hard.
We cannot afford to build a house again and we are hoping that you take us very seriously and give us some assistance.
Tableland/Moruga MP Michelle Benjamin said the land began eroding in 2015 and in 2019 the Ministry of Works did some work but it was sufficient. Claiming that a water leak was also contributed to the landslip, she said, “The government is aware of the situation and I am here pleading for the homeowners.
Aside from the landslip, this is about saving homes. Times are hard, people cannot afford to rebuild.” Attempts to reach Works Minister Rohan Sinanan on his cellphone were unsuccessful.